Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki raises his hands with members of his State of Law coalition after addressing supporters at Al-Mina Stadium during a visit to Basra, in southern Iraq, this month. Iraq is due to hold general elections on March 7, and the incumbent faces strong competition from an alliance of Iranian-backed parties. hide caption

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As Elections Near, Iraqi PM's Support Wanes In South
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Violence Ramps Up During Iraqi Election Season
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Controversial Commission Influences Iraqi Elections
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An Iraqi man walks past posters with a symbolic X across a picture of Iraqi lawmaker Dhafir al-Ani, a Sunni politician who was barred from running in the election because of alleged ties to the Baath party. Alaa al-Marjani/AP hide caption

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Iraq's Campaign Season Opens With Controversy
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U.S. Influence Over Iraq's Government Wanes
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Iraqis holding pictures of Saddam Hussein march during a protest against the new constitution of Iraq near Ramadi in 2005. Bilal Hussein/AP hide caption

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Familiar Face Returns To Iraqi Politics: Saddam
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Shiites Mark Holy Day In Iraq
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In this Jan. 20 photo, an Iraqi man in Najaf, south of Baghdad, walks past posters for Iraqi lawmaker Dhafir al-Ani, a Sunni politician who had been barred from running in the March 7 parliamentary election because of alleged ties to the Baath Party. The Arabic says, "No return for the Baathists." An Iraqi appeals court Wednesday suspended the ban on hundreds of candidates for suspected ties to Saddam Hussein's regime, allowing them to run in the election. Alaa al-Marjani/AP hide caption

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Iraqi Court Lifts Ban On Hundreds Of Candidates
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Some Palestinian Workers Face Jail For Jobs
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Iraqi security forces monitor traffic Wednesday in the Karradah district of Iraq's capital Baghdad as heavy security measures were imposed following bombings this week. Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Security Checkpoints Leave Baghdad Vulnerable
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Reporter's Notebook: Friend Killed In Iraq Bombing
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Baghdad Attacks Targets Hotels; Over 30 Killed
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George Mitchell (left) meets Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak in Tel Aviv on Thursday. Matty Stern/U.S Embassy, HO via AP hide caption

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U.S. Mideast Envoy Faces A Deadlock
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Jordan Caught Between An Ally And Its People
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'Kind' Jordanian Doctor Turned Suicide Bomber
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